Forums Trip Reports The Fishing Thread
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  • #617802
    SPLITRIPPIN
    709 Posts

    Oh man.. don’t tempt me fellows.. You may just have a surly Polack, and Scandanavian showing up on your doorsteps looking to go fish!.. I’m sure I can talk my homie Dan into some type of bike mission. I can tell he’s anxious for my off road skills to get a little better. But, I’m into it.. big time… moto missions!

    #617803
    Rico in AZ
    559 Posts

    So, something like 4.5 million people visit the Grand Canyon by various modes, and some 25,000 float the river through the Canyon every year. And the vast majority only visit the south rim for less than four hours, and only the tiniest of tiny percentage bother to fish. Oh what the masses are missing.

    I’ve had pretty close contact with GCNP for a while now. In fact, about 8 years ago I met my wife, who was working at GCNP about the same time I began getting back into flyfishing. My fishing obsession has grown into something manic, and it’s now time I embark on the quest to fish as much of the Park as I can, and what will hopefully be infrequent updates to this thread.

    The Park Service stocked trout of various species in most tributaries, and most tributaries still have trout, rainbows and browns, however the cutts and brookies are gone now. And after Glen Canyon dam was built and rainbows stocked into the river, trout became a permanent fixture.

    Which brings me to the subject of hotspotting. I know on some message boards, hotspotting is frowned upon. But fuck it. So much of the Grand Canyon is so difficultly accessible I seriously doubt a post on splitboard.com will unleash the masses on its streams.

    Mrs. ricorides doesn’t work at the Park anymore, but it’s not gonna stop me from fishing the streams of the Canyon. In fact, I think my resolve and obsession to fish the river and tribs has only gotten stronger. So with that, the Mrs. and I began my quest this past weekend with a hike into Soap Creek, a dry intermittent side canyon with no trout, the goal being the rainbows in the Colorado River.

    The hike in begins at a pretty non-descript parking area not too far from Cliff Dwellers, below the Vermilion Cliffs. This will be the last view of the rim and cliffs for a while.

    And the going gets rough pretty quickly, on a small pour over of polished limestone,

    Pretty quickly into the hike the going gets a little tough with some small pour-offs. I took a peek at the trail register as we left, and someone had wrote the hike had taken 8 hours. The trail description the NPS sent us with the permit, described the route as 2.5 miles and difficult, and I thought, “8 hours! what a moron.” Someone else had written they had seen desert bighorn sheep, and I thought “Sweet, I hope so.”

    And at about this point the trail turned from a lousy trail into nothing more than a route in which one, as best as one can, follows the canyon bottom. This is when the mother of all rock falls obfuscates the canyon bottom, and the unfortunate hiker is left to follow the shittiest cairned route I have ever followed. But WTF, there’s fishing at the end right? I wish I had more photos from the rock fall section, what I did bother to take photos of doesn’t even come close to describing how slow, frustrating, physically demanding this section was; the down climbs with and without ropes, packs on, packs off and lower packs with ropes, packs back on. And repeat several times. It took and hour and a half to pass through the rock fall both ways, and I’m convinced there is no easier way through.

    There weren’t as many flowers as I thought there’d be, but the Datura was going off.

    Eventually we made it through the rock fall, onto a rock layer that tends to slope rather than form cliffs, where the intermittent streams comes to the surface, and hiking became much easier. My wife stopped dead in her tracks, and I was about fifty yards behind, and thought “that’s odd.”

    A dying bighorn. Dying, present tense. It was still breathing, albeit slowly. And it eyes were open obviously afraid of our presence, and making sad bellowing groans. It was pretty damn sobering to see the circle of life were the arm is pointing to the eleven o’clock position. I’ve seen bighorns before on river trips and other places, and I always assumed they die somewhere, sometime, but to actually see one is incredibly shocking. There were no obvious reasons why this animal was dying. Definitely not how I was hoping to see desert bighorns.
    The canyon bottom got to be much easier walking, but the next hour was quiet and somber after seeing the bighorn. It had a pretty strong effect on my wife.

    Eventually my spirits lifted with the sound of the rapids at the river. Fishing is close finally.


    There were fish sipping midges in this eddy, and I landed a couple, but I’ve found that if you don’t have the exact replica of what they’re sipping you don’t stand a chance.




    Evening fishing session,



    And a couple parting shots.
    Looking up canyon, already hot,

    It was noticeably hotter on Sunday. We took short breaks in the shade of every overhang.
    And in the middle of the rock fall section, someone else had stopped to share their frustration, just as I was feeling. I just had to laugh.

    All in all, the hike I would rate as very difficult, if just for the rock fall section. And I would say it’s more like 4 miles, don’t let the mileage fool you. The moron who wrote in the register was spot on.
    With that I hope to be bringing occasional installments from the grandest of all canyons.

    #617804
    SPLITRIPPIN
    709 Posts

    Rico… I freeeeeeekin’ LOVE hike in fishing. That looks simply kick ass…big time bummer about the bighorn. I could see how that could put a damper on the mood.

    Looks like all the more motivation to maybe put something together soon, and head out out for some San Juan dualie fly fishing!

    I should have my moto replaced real soon :thatrocks:

    #617805
    raym
    385 Posts

    been a good start to the fishing year for my GF and I..
    first trip got these plus one we didnt get a pic of


    2nd trip
    always great views of Hurricain ridge, washington state….


    3rd trip

    #617806
    raym
    385 Posts

    The fishing around south Vancouver Island has been getting better. Now, if only the weather would as well.

    Headed up island to port alberni for some Sockeye. The weather cooled down and rain took over causing the action to slow. We got a total of 3 fish in 3 days.

    Back to the south island I got this one and lost 6 others. this run are aggressive fighters.

    got these 2 today, larger one looks to be a Columbia river fish and the smaller one apears to be a frazer river fish.

    #617807
    raym
    385 Posts

    Fishing has been real good off S. Vancouver Island. Lots of BIG Springs are coming in and the Coho’s have showed up so it has been non-stop action.

    got these last weekend, Missing from the pic is a Chinook and a Cabazon


    #617808
    stein
    174 Posts

    love the native fish in the east Kootenays

    river levels are dropping and the fishing is on!

    this one pulled the fly line out of my hand so hard it left burn marks between my thumb and index finger :thumpsup:

    #617809
    rjc
    69 Posts

    I finally got a fly setup and headed up to the eastern sierra for a few days. We went over Kearsarge Pass and hopped onto the JMT. It didn’t disappoint.

    Kearsarge Pinnacles & Lakes

    Sierra Gold!



    And some of the scenery:

    #617810
    libtechsplit
    198 Posts

    Ray, you just haul in salmon like it aint no thing at all, hey? the joys of island livin’..

    just a reminder everyone, wear your PFD’s !! i went down in the river on thursday wearing hip waders for the first time. it was all good, until the current pushed me from my 3 feet of water over the rocky shelf into about 15 feet. then it was ‘holy shit im gonna DIE!’ as the filled waders pulled me like the devils hands straight down toward the bottom of the river! On the bank my neighbour (whos gear i was using) is yelling “pull your thing, man , pull your thing!!” referring to the co2 ripcord to inflate the PFD. i had to take a full breath cuz my head was going under, ditch the rod and then give a two hand yank on the cord, which filled the unit in a few seconds (just like how the avy bags inflate) , literally saving my dumb ass. after that it was just backstroke like hell to the bank before going down the next set of rapids…Fishing for salmon – who knew it would be the sport that has (so far) brought me closest to death.

    #617811
    raym
    385 Posts

    @libtechsplit wrote:

    Ray, you just haul in salmon like it aint no thing at all, hey? the joys of island livin’..

    just a reminder everyone, wear your PFD’s !! i went down in the river on thursday wearing hip waders for the first time. it was all good, until the current pushed me from my 3 feet of water over the rocky shelf into about 15 feet. then it was ‘holy shit im gonna DIE!’ as the filled waders pulled me like the devils hands straight down toward the bottom of the river! On the bank my neighbour (whos gear i was using) is yelling “pull your thing, man , pull your thing!!” referring to the co2 ripcord to inflate the PFD. i had to take a full breath cuz my head was going under, ditch the rod and then give a two hand yank on the cord, which filled the unit in a few seconds (just like how the avy bags inflate) , literally saving my dumb ass. after that it was just backstroke like hell to the bank before going down the next set of rapids…Fishing for salmon – who knew it would be the sport that has (so far) brought me closest to death.

    My friend, it’s what I do. I’ve had a few more since then! You should come down some time before they are gone!

    It’s a good idea to wear a PFD, I guess I’m pretty bad for that when I’m flyin solo in the boat and river. glad you are ok!

    #617812
    stein
    174 Posts

    Spent 5 days on horseback at the headwaters of the clearwater river. Got up to Lost Guide Lake for some good cutty action, lots of wildlife, explored some wolfs dens, and drooled over what some of the terrain would look like in the winter

    [youtube:2uogu596]xYMh2WvxeLQ[/youtube:2uogu596]

    #617813
    raym
    385 Posts

    looks like a great trip! Man I miss my horse, a good ride like that is somthing ive wanted to do for a long time

    #617815
    libtechsplit
    198 Posts

    Ray

    Damn i wish i could take u up on that. when does the season end down there? i couldnt decipher the fishery website to figure it out for myself.

    #617814
    raym
    385 Posts

    @libtechsplit wrote:

    Ray

    Damn i wish i could take u up on that. when does the season end down there? i couldnt decipher the fishery website to figure it out for myself.

    fish are open all year, but the big springs will be gone in a few more weeks..

    #617816
    libtechsplit
    198 Posts

    Ray

    Salmon season has been thin here in the interior by all reports ive heard. Last weekend i did see one 24lb fish landed, but thats the only one so far. Myself havent caught anything (but thats no suprise) , i only get out once or maybe twice a week. gas and ferry ride says i wont be getting to the island, but you should land a few more for me. :drool:

    #617817
    raym
    385 Posts

    @libtechsplit wrote:

    Ray

    Salmon season has been thin here in the interior by all reports ive heard. Last weekend i did see one 24lb fish landed, but thats the only one so far. Myself havent caught anything (but thats no suprise) , i only get out once or maybe twice a week. gas and ferry ride says i wont be getting to the island, but you should land a few more for me. :drool:

    Man fishing had died right off here alredy. Supposed to be good till october……. 😥

    #617818

    Glad to see some fishing stoke!!
    Here are some spring 2012 pics


    I think this guy had a hard winter he was skinny, slow, and soft.

    #617819
    stein
    174 Posts

    nice browns and cutts!

    here’s my gopro edit from this summer/fall fly fishing for cutties and bulls

    [youtube:2skq7kxy]4BOA5mZjEvk[/youtube:2skq7kxy]

    #617820
    MHolmes
    190 Posts

    This week in Squamish. The chum run is in full force with great numbers this year! Awesome way to bend an 8 weight.

    #617821
    raym
    385 Posts

    My GF’s zombie chum from yesterday on the Cowichan…

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